To the Residents of Whitemarsh Township,
We live in an amazing community. Whitemarsh is a special place; a place that we have loved for many years. We’ve raised our children here. We’ve volunteered in our schools, in our firehouses and at our libraries. None of the three of us ever imagined we’d be running for office. However, the way of life that makes Whitemarsh so special is in jeopardy. We are running for office to change the direction of the township as it pertains to four areas: responsible development, preservation of our township’s rich history, improved accountability of our paid township staff and improved communication and transparency.
You may have noticed changes to the way of life we have enjoyed here in Whitemarsh already. The continued unrestrained development in the township has brought more automobiles to our neighborhoods. Those automobiles have resulted in more traffic. I’m sure many of you have had experiences on Ridge Pike, or Germantown Pike, West Valley Green Road or Flourtown Rd that are less than pleasant. Our kids are spending more time on the bus trying to get home, Moms and Dads are spending more time in the car, instead of being at home with their families, and businesses are at risk if Whitemarsh eventually becomes an area people avoid as a result of all the traffic.
The development also impacts our roads and bridges. The bedrock in our community is full of limestone. When you continuously disturb the limestone when breaking ground for development and it rains that limestone gets heavy and causes sinkholes. Thank goodness that none of the sinkholes in our township have resulted in injuries; however, they have compounded the traffic issues that plague our community. We are also endangering our local environment by significantly reducing our tree canopy and displacing the wildlife that lived in the areas that have been overdeveloped. The sinkhole on Butler Pike is very near a high pressure natural gas line.
You personally are paying the township to preserve open space. They are not doing a very good job. Each Whitemarsh resident pays a tax of .25% of your income into an open space fund. We pledge to better utilize the open space fund more efficiently than it has been used.
Some of this development is happening next to important historical properties. No other place in our beautiful country has the kind of historic treasures that we have in Whitemarsh. The historic sites must be protected and they are not being protected by the current board. As an example, some of you may have heard of Abolition Hall. This historic homestead was a busy stop on the Underground Railroad. The Maulsby and Corson families were ardent abolitionists, and opened their home to fugitive slaves. They also were conductors on this pathway to freedom, and journeyed under cover of darkness to deliver men, women, and children to the next safe house. The Township’s Code provides protections–for historical and natural resources–and our elected officials must be empowered to enforce these protections. This is not to argue that all development is bad, or that no development should take place in the township. Rather the point is that we need a balanced approach, and we need leadership to make that happen. Lip service alone is not adequate–not from the developer, and not from elected officials. We need real results for our community, and we are ready able and willing to deliver those results.
I know many of our friends and neighbors do not have the opportunity to attend the meetings in the township or watch them on television. If you have attended meetings or watched them on TV, you know that the lack of transparency is disturbing. “I’d like to remind the public that this is a time for public comment. You can ask questions, but the board will not be answering those questions.” This line has been repeated over and over by our township solicitor and the solicitor for the Colonial School District. You deserve better. We will listen to your questions, we will answer your questions. We will ensure that the information we have in front of us will be made available to you. We will ensure the agendas for our meetings are published earlier than they are today. We will do a better job for the people that we serve.
Finally, we know “politics” are in a sad state in our country. The polarization that exists in today’s society is unpleasant to say the least. This is not a state or federal election. This election is about our community and the preservation of the way of life that attracted us to Whitemarsh in the first place. One of us was a Democrat for 49 years before deciding to run for office. Another one of us was a registered Independent. What we know for certain is that there are good Democrats, Republicans and Independents who care about our community. What we are asking you is that you look at Perry, Linda and Frank’s track record as volunteers, neighbors and residents in this community when making your decision on who to vote for. We hope to earn your vote over the coming weeks, and we’d be happy to answer any of your questions. You can learn more about us at whitemarshstrong.org or @WhitemarshStrong on Facebook. Also feel free to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Finally, at least one of us attends nearly all the township meetings. We look forward to hearing from you and we thank you for taking the time to read this.
Linda, Perry and Frank
Paid for by the Whitemarsh Republican Committee
September 30th, 2019 | By Kevin TierneySponsored Content
To the Residents of Whitemarsh Township,